A campus guide for the Concordia foodie
Montreal has long been revered for its trendy cafés, delis and restaurants. As a cultural hub whose diversity is reflected in a broad range of gourmet wonders, it is the perfect city for any eager student gastronome.
While culinary experiences abound in the city’s many nooks and crannies, I’ve drawn up this list with hungry Concordians in mind.
Here are some must-try items that can be found in and around the university’s two campuses.
Sir George Williams Campus (downtown)
Guilty pleasure: fried pickles & pulled pork perfection
Sometimes you’ve got to appease your inner glutton. What better way to do that than with a BBQ pulled pork sub with the works (think onion rings, cheddar and spicy mayo).
PERK: from 12 to 3 p.m. you can get Reggie’s Quick Fix, a panini with fried egg, bacon, cheese, tomato and lettuce, served with tater tots for only $6. Become a member and get 10 per cent off your meals, just ask your server about the one-time $5 membership fee.
Cost savvy: vegan-friendly lunches and suppers that won’t put you back
The People’s Potato on the seventh floor of the Henry F. Hall (H) Building offers by-donation vegan lunches every weekday during the fall and winter terms from 12:30 to 2 p.m. Just bring your own plate and enjoy. Plus, don’t forget to download the vegan cookbook!
You can also head over to Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard at Concordia’s Multi-faith and Spirituality Centre for supper, where you can get a free vegan dinner (a $2 donation is recommended) every Thursday from 5 to 7 p.m. during the academic year.
Have it your way: made-to-order pizza
You can have it any way you want at the Green Beet Café in the Hall Café 4, which has a make-your-own pizza station for delicious, custom dressed, oven baked pizzas to order.
Fill your topping bowl with a variety of veggies and meats, then hand it over to the café’s pizza maker who will bake your custom creation on site.
The café, which is located on the fourth floor of the Hall Building, also offers a myriad of vegetarian and vegan-friendly lunch options as well as espresso, cappuccino and four selections of fair trade coffee.
Health hack: salads, soups and sandwiches every day
What’s on the menu? Monday: teriyaki twist bowl, Tuesday: smokehouse burrito, Wednesday: buddha’s satay bowl, Thursday: spicy lemongrass soup, Friday: buffalo wrap.
Freshii’s meals and snacks are often fibre-rich, with slow-burning carbs, essential fats and lean proteins.
Around the block: hallelujah, (r)amen!
GaNaDaRa (1862 De Maisonneuve W.) is a little place with a big following. While its façade is rather non-descript, the local Korean eatery is hard to miss as throngs of hungry people are often seen queued outside.
This may be because they serve the best Ramen in town, spicy and substantial (with the option of adding cheese, which I highly recommend). It’s a favourite on the menu, which also boasts many other finger-licking options at notably affordable prices (~$10).
P.S. Don’t wan’t to wait in line for a seat, just call in your order for pick up — it will be ready and waiting within 10 minutes!
For wonton soup and noodle bowls, Roi Du Wonton (2125 Saint-Marc) is the place to go.
Mélissa-Anne Ménard, Concordia graduate and student outreach assistant at the Student Success Centre, says be sure to ask at the counter for their secret “blow-your-taste-buds-away” hot sauce.
“It’s especially good to help you breathe easier when you have a cold during those dark, freezing winter days.”
Cheap eats: your forever falafel
Want a tried and trusted less-than-$2 falafel sandwich? Check out Nilufar (1923 Sainte-Catherine W.) where, for an extra $3 you can make it a combo with a salad/soup/fries and juice.
“Hands down the best falafel sandwich I’ve had,” says Ménard.
“Their garlic potatoes and tofu sandwiches are also fabulous, and don’t even get me started on their vegan brownie — it’s a godsend and an ideal end of term pick-me-up. Their sandwiches are also sold at Le Frigo Vert.”
Daily dinners for under $10: from chickpea tagine to maple glazed pork
Every day you can enjoy the all-you-care-to-eat service offered at the Buzz Dining Hall. Breakfasts only cost $7.20 while lunch and dinners are $9.75.
Beyond the salad and pizza bar, you will also find a variety of warm dishes such as chickpea tagine, maple and mustard glazed pork and chicken teriyaki stir-fry, as well as many vegan options.
Totally free: vegan-friendly lunch
Can’t get to the People’s Potato from Loyola in time for free lunches? Don’t fret; you can also enjoy free vegetarian meals throughout the year at the Hive; lunch starts at 12:30 p.m.
Ready-to-eat Gourmet menu
The Market, located in the Richard J. Renaud Science Complex (SP), is your place for on-the-go meal options with a gourmet twist. Pick your protein from a selection of pre-prepared local meals and customize your plate by adding tasty sides such as grilled zucchini, roasted potatoes, kale or a soup for less than $2 extra.
There are also plenty of grab-and-go type snacks and sandwiches! Try the combo special, which includes a mini sandwich with a small soup or salad for just $5.25!
Caffeine break: cappuccino and macaroon time!
Café 92 (6703 Sherbrooke W.) is a tranquil coffee house and a favourite among neighbourhood locals.
While the cappuccino and macaroons are particularly popular, you can also sample a large variety of teas and indulge in bistro-style food — often with a Mexican twist, reflecting the heritage of two of its owners.
Deli delight: spicy schnitzel sandwich
Looking for a tasty and affordable lunch with a little oomph? Head to Café Bano (6929 Sherbrooke W.), a charming family-run café that’s been called the best in the west. It’s just a five-minute walk from the Loyola Campus.
I recommend the chicken schnitzel sandwich — ask for it spicy — for a true and tried deli delight that is sure to please those who like a little punch with lunch!
Concordia Commuter Meal Plans
Eating a lot on campus? Commuter meal plans are available every semester to anyone at Concordia who wants to dine on the dash. No need to carry cash, the plan is registered to your student ID card and the cost is deducted from your balance.
Choose from five different plans and get dining deals and monthly promotional offers. Upgrade to The Golden Deal Plan and get access to all you can eat dining services at dining halls on both campuses and save on taxes, just like the students in residence.
Find out more about the commuter plans available to you and how they work.
Esther Ste-Croix, document coordinator and archivist with the Faculty of Arts and Science wrote in to suggest a "wonderful new dumpling place" called Koyajo (6963 Sherbrooke W.) near the Loyola Campus. "The food is simple, healthy, vegan (or not) and really tasty," she says. Plus, they have homemade kombucha. If you're looking for dessert, afterward, Ste-Croix suggests you head across the street to Ca lem (6926 Sherbrooke W.) to sample their sorbets.
Do you have a favourite campus or near-campus eatery to share? Send your suggestions to: firstname.lastname@example.org.